Manchester City host Everton at the Etihad as these teams herald the dawning of 2020 on New Year’s Day. Pep Guardiola’s champions can’t afford any more slip-ups if they want to hold on to any slim chances of retaining their title at the expense of their visitors’ local rivals, Liverpool.
Where and when: Etihad Stadium – 1 January, kick-off 17:30
Where you can see Manchester City vs. Everton: BT Sport
Last time: Dominic Calvert-Lewin cancelled out Gabriel Jesus’s opener when these teams met at Goodison Park in September, but goals from Riyad Mahrez and Raheem Sterling in the final 20 minutes handed City a 3-1 win.
Manchester City v Everton Predictions and Preview
Manchester City have an excellent record against Everton in recent seasons, and it’s imperative for the Blues that continues on New Year’s Day. The Citizens have won each of the last four meetings between the clubs, scoring 11 times, but the Toffees now have a serial winner in their dugout and there’s renewed optimism on the blue half of Merseyside.
Carlo Ancelotti made a winning start to life in his new role on Boxing Day, as Calvert-Lewin’s superb diving header secured a late 1-0 victory over Burnley. Everton will quickly climb the bunched-up Premier League table if they can go on a strong run, although the new boss doesn’t have much time to make many changes over the festive period.
Ancelotti is more of a man manager than a revered tactician or coach, however, which should stand him in better stead right now. The Toffees have plenty of talented players within their ranks, but they aren’t performing as they should. There’s going to have to be serious improvement in this game if the away team are going to secure their first victory away to City since they managed back-to-back wins at the Etihad in 2010.
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Man City to win and BTTS
Calvert-Lewin to score first
The Citizens have only lost once to Everton in the league since then, a 4-0 mauling at Goodison in January 2017. The Blues have won eight of the last 13 Premier League meetings between the sides, with four draws. Anything other than three points would be disastrous for City, even if their chances of reigning in Liverpool are already rated as slim to none.
Nevertheless, the home team’s squad is packed with supremely talented players, and they have arguably the league’s best player right now based on current form. Kevin De Bruyne has been sensational in recent weeks, with the Belgian playing in a slightly more advanced role. He could be joined by David Silva behind the front three, with the Spaniard expected to return from injury along with John Stones and Ilkay Gundogan. Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane remain sidelined though.
Everton meanwhile could have Morgan Schneiderlin back, although Alex Iwobi and Jean-Philippe Gbamin are expected to miss another two to three weeks of action. Andre Gomes continues his rehabilitation from a broken and dislocated ankle, but even with a fully-fit squad the Toffees would be right up against it here. City are the heavy favourites for the win at 2/9, while Everton are 14/1 and the draw is 7/1.
One to watch for Manchester City: Kevin De Bruyne is arguably the finest attacking midfielder in Europe right now, and has six goals in his last nine games for club and country. The Belgium international is 15/2 to break the deadlock here.
One to watch for Everton: Dominic Calvert-Lewin has been completely rejuvenated since Marco Silva’s dismissal, with Duncan Ferguson and now Carlo Ancelotti placing their faith in the 22-year-old. He has three goals from his last four Premier League appearances, and is 15/1 to open the scoring.
Long shot: Although City are looking for their fifth successive victory over Everton, four of the last 10 meetings between the teams have ended in draws. Three of those have finished 1-1, with the same scoreline here priced at 17/1.